Day 14 Lining Check

0.6mm

Not bad. But not amazing yet. Pretty much right on track with the last cycle.

Going to see if we can keep building for another few days. Back in for a day 18 lining check on Thursday.

Fingers Crossed for something over 0.7mm…

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#MicroblogMonday: Expecting to be expecting 2018

Is there a cute way to announce IVF?Microblog_Mondays

I was thinking about this the other day. Each time my sister has been pregnant she has announced it in a cute way to the family. The first time was a cookie with icing that said ‘baby on board’. The second was a picture of the pee stick positive sign to the family whatsapp group (it was funny because my mother had no idea what she was looking at) obviously its been a while for her. It may not be much, but it is cute and it is something to celebrate.

So is there a cute way to announce to our family we are starting IVF? We have already told all immediate family members, so this might be too little to late. But I still wish there was a cuter way to do it.

Kinda like the ‘we’re expecting’ pictures all over pinterest. I feel like we should have done that. Like a ‘we’re pre-heating the oven for our little bun’ or ‘expecting to be expecting in 2018’. It would be nice to celebrate instead of worry for a change.

Actually, I kinda like the expecting to be expecting idea. I need to remember that for the PUPO stage.


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Eeep!

Email from DEB USA just came in:

“Great news! This email is to confirm that your eggs are on-site with Mount Sinai Fertility. Please allow 24-48 hours for the medical staff to process.

We wish you the best of luck on your cycle!”

Eeeep!

And the winner is…

We selected our donor yesterday. It’s Donor B. Yay!

After DH and I discussed the three finalists we both realized that colour didn’t matter to either of us. Her skin, eye and hair colour were the only thing holding us back.  She checked every other box for us. That just didn’t make sense to either of us in the end.

She complements DH’s traits quite well. Her family history contains little to be concerned about, and in fact complements DH family history. He has diabetes and high blood pressure and cholesterol issues in the family, she does not. She doesn’t need glasses. DH does. She never wore braces and neither did he. She is studying to become a pediatric nurse and he wants to become a pediatrician. Plus we know she has two kids of her own and her egg lot has resulted in at least 2 pregnancies so far, so there should be no issues with egg quality. That is something that gives me immense peace of mind that I am giving this my best shot. I didn’t think a proven donor was important to me until I thought about that.

At the end of the day I think I would always be thinking ‘what if’ if we waited and ended up missing out. So that sealed the deal for me. And now that the decision is made I feel at peace with our decision. So I know it was the right one.

Now we wait for DEB USA to get back to us on the next steps, payment, logistics etc.

It doesn’t quite feel real yet. I know I should be excited but I also keep reminding myself that this is such a long shot for us. This is just step one. There are so many more hurdles to come that I almost don’t want to celebrate too soon. Maybe we wait till we get a few viable embryos. Or I get a uterine lining of over 0.7mm. Or perhaps we wait till we get a positive beta result. Or after the 12 week mark when risk of miscarriage is reduced. Or we wait till after delivery. I know it seems silly, but I just don’t want to jinx it right now.

I haven’t told my family yet. I don’t know if I want to just yet. It is funny how yesterday I was ok with telling the world, and today I am back to keeping this a secret for a little while longer. I just feel like getting hopeful about something is a surefire way to jinx it. I did tell my best friend R last night. She was very supportive and excited for me. She did also point out that I probably don’t want to tell my family because of the reaction I might get. Which is also true. When it comes to family, their words can cut much deeper than a strangers.

If I tell my mom we selected a donor who is a fair, redhead I feel like she might be a little disappointed that she is not going to have a purely ‘brown’ grandchild. Her first question will be, ‘wasn’t there a ‘brown’ donor’. I know it seems so racist and just silly. But it will cross her mind. Never mind that the baby will be half-brown thanks to DH. But this is how they are.  I am afraid Dad will start going all religious on me and I am not ready to deal with that. As for my sister. That just feels awkward right now. I don’t have any negative feelings toward her, but it does feel a bit strange to tell someone who basically doesn’t agree that a woman should give her eggs to another woman that I am taking another woman’s eggs. I told her about the ED search process last week and it just felt awkward. Of course, I don’t have any reason to believe any of this will happen. It is just in my head.

DH told his mom yesterday as well. But her reaction was lukewarm at best. It was more like:

DH: Mom we are doing IVF this year.

Mom: Oh ok. How is the weather over there.

He thinks she might not have understood completely what he was saying. It was a phone conversation  with a bit of a time difference so maybe she was still sleepy? She does have a tendency to mishear us on the phone a lot. (They are snowbirds so spend much of the winter in India). We will discuss again when I am home as well. I am not looking forward to that conversation either.

I guess I am ok to tell strangers where I can hide behind by computer screen. But face to face conversations with people that are close to me are a no-no. I need to figure out why that is.

Crowdfunding for IVF?

DH called at lunchtime, as he normally does, and asked if we wanted to crowdfund our IVF.

Huh.

To be honest I never really thought about it. But it does seem pretty appealing. We reach out to friends and family and through social media try to solicit funding for our IVF cycle this year.

The skeptic in me seems to think it highly unlikely that we would find any friends and family that would want to just give us their money. I mean wouldn’t they spend their money on something that would benefit them or their own family. I find it really hard to believe that anyone would want to part with their money to allow DH and I to have a chance of adding to the global population. But DH seems to think that people might be more generous that I give them credit for.

That also means I have to become a bit more public about my journey. Not entirely a bad thing. I have always thought about just being open and public about what we are going through. But then I also have that nagging feeling of what will people think. I don’t know why it bothers me, but it does. I don’t like the thought of other people judging me based on our struggles. I am perfectly content with my situation and am dealing with it as best I can. But still I don’t like the idea of other people talking about me.

It has a lot to do with the community I grew up in. No one talks about infertility, so when it happens its more like gossip. Psst…did you hear that so and so is having trouble conceiving. So and so has been married 5 years and still no kids. Etc etc. It is beyond annoying and I try to just stay away from such conversations.  It just seems silly the more I think about it. By avoiding talking about it I am just adding to the stigma, rather than trying to address the issue.

There is an almost liberating feeling that will come with just opening up about our journey. So I am honestly seriously considering it. I told DH he can look into it starting a crowdfunding campaign. Lets see where it goes from here.

 

Genetics

As of right now, we have managed to cull down our ‘favourite’ list of egg donors to 3 top contenders. All three are well educated, or on their way to finishing their education at a post secondary level. But that is where their similarities end. These three women are all over the map in terms of their looks, genetics and ‘intentions’ sections on their profiles.

My biggest concern is that one of them has been flagged as a carrier for a certain disease. Lets call her Donor A. While it is very rare and DH is unlikely to be a carrier, we of course will need to get him tested to be sure. When I asked my clinic coordinator if we should get him tested before we select a donor, at first they seemed to down play the need. The coordinator advised that once we had selected a donor we could do the testing and if they were not a match, we could switch donors.

While that seems to work in theory, that does not work for me. Basically, it a very clinical way of looking at things. Unfortunately when dealing with human emotions such as, oh I don’t know, choosing 50% of the genetic basis for a future offspring, that might be something that needs to factored into the equation. I politely explained to the coordinator that I did not want to get my heart set on a donor, pay the fees (not an insignificant sum), and then find out we have to start again because of an incompatibility in DH’s own profile. Lets skip that messiness and just test him now so we know what to stay away from at the start. I wish they had discussed this with us at our initial appointment so we could have started considering it then.

The coordinator agreed to let DH complete his genetic testing now, and they are providing us with a requisition so that DH can get his tests done soon. The genetic profiling is called a Counsyl panel and will cost us $400. It is the same testing that the ED’s go through. On the Counsyl website it says results can take up to 3 weeks. So hopefully by mid March we have our results and can take a step toward finalizing a donor.

Of course that now means that the three short listed candidates may no longer be in the running by the time we are ready to make a decision.

Alternatively we save the $400 now, and just select a donor that doesn’t have any genetic flags on her profile. Donors B and C fall into this category.

So I guess the decision is whether we feel it is necessary to get the genetic testing done now or not. And that depends on how we feel about Donor A, with a flag on her records.

Until yesterday I thought she was the one. But today I am not sure. I almost feel one of the other two are a better fit.

Donor A is pretty, has similar skin tone and physical features and size as me, even though we are both not of the same heritage. Her educational background is decent and I liked her personality that came through in some of her answers. Both DH and I like her. But her genetic profile gives us pause.

Donor B seems to be what I want in terms of personality and educational aptitude. She is definitely the smartest of the three donors. She is a proven donor, and currently has 2 pregnancies that are ongoing from her previous egg lots. But in terms of looks she is the total opposite of me. I mean her height, face and eye shape are all similar, but that’s about it. She is very fair,  with red hair and blue eyes. Gorgeous. But so not me. I am brown all round. Brown hair, eyes and skin. That being said, her family seems to have predominantly brown haired people as well. Skin tones vary as well since she is a mixed race. So there is a chance that when mixed with DH’s very brown genes we will still end up with a pretty brown baby.

Donor C is of similar heritage to both DH and I. But her academics are not as strong. And in terms of looks she is  a a bit average compared to the other two who are both gorgeous. Plus her genetic profile is squeaky clean.

So as of right now, I almost want to just select Donor B and skip DH’s genetic testing since there are no red flags in her profile. DH and I will discuss this further but that is how I feel right now. So after all that maybe we don’t need to get DH tested after all.

Sometimes I feel like I am kind of cheating. I mean I feel like I am using the selection criteria to choose a genetic pot that I wouldn’t normally have access to. Like I personally think a mixed race baby with brown skin and light eyes would be gorgeous. And so does that mean I am gravitating towards those profiles that can give me a chance of that rather than sticking to someone who would give us a purely ‘brown’ baby. But then I justify that by telling myself there are so many other factors that also come into play, I am not just choosing based on looks. They are a factor, but not the only factor.

 

 

#MicroblogMonday: I feel sick

I’m sick again. Both literally and figuratively. Sick with what feels like another flu, and sick of feeling so helpless in the midst of all the crazy in the world right now.

I had this past Friday off for Chinese New Year (the perks of working for a company with a head office in China). So I spent the day chillin’ with my favourite little man, my nephew. Unfortunately, he had the sniffles and naturally, since my immune system is in the same category as small children and the elderly, I managed to catch whatever it is he had. It was totally worth it and I would do it again in a heatbeat, but today my nose is stuffed and my chest is congested. I made it to work this morning, but it was such a battle to peel myself out of bed this morning. I feel exhausted from just being awake. I can’t believe I am sick again. This is flu number 3 in as many months. Brutal. I am chugging the flu meds and trying the homeopathic stuff too. Hoping something helps kick this out out of me soon.

The weekend was also spent in complete disbelief regarding world events. Trumps ode to fascism circa  Germany in the 1930’s is difficult to watch. And then, even closer to home, a mass shootings at a mosque in Quebec. Another targeted attack at the Muslim community. It is just too much for a Muslim-Canadian girl to comprehend.

Today, my thoughts and prayers are with the victims and families involved in the Quebec shooting.  And I am proud to read the stories of all the efforts to quash Trump’s blatant racism across the border. Despite the Quebec shooting, I do think I am incredibly lucky to live in Canada as opposed to America right now. I watch with bated breath each day hoping things don’t get much worse for the Muslim community. I will make donations to assist as best I can, but still I feel helpless and my heat is heavy with sadness right now.


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